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DIY – A Do-It-Yourself Nightmare

For homes and businesses, it is obvious that keeping the premises secured while the owners are away is important, but what may not be so obvious is how to go about this both cost effectively and time efficiently. There are two subjects in the secured premise model that should be looked at to provide the coverage that compensate each other.

First, having an alarm system on your property that is monitored 24/7 provides a level of confidence while you walk away to let the system monitor the perimeter. However, what can be heart wrenching is having the alarm go off and not having evidence of who it was that caused the break-in. While you may receive an alert that such an alarm was triggered, law enforcement cannot physically respond to an alarm in a quick enough manner to catch the criminals in the act.

Second, having a video monitoring system to take up the slack of where the alarm system leaves off is the next logical step in coverage. Having the visual evidence that a person was pulling on a door or gained entrance where a motion detector glass broke or other sensor was or was not positioned would provide a description of the perpetrator to turn over to the law enforcement.

Many people attempt to remedy their security solutions themselves with a “Big Box” solution from a local BestBuy store or Sam’s Club but they soon find out what makes the difference in security solutions. A quick google search on DIY security solutions to see what could be installed will yield many brands but many people find the installation of these “kits” to be inadequate, much less confusing.

Opening up the box of the cameras and the recording unit, one could be overwhelmed with wiring that needs to be connected. Although to some it can seem pretty simple to put together in your living room floor, many feel it manageable, but frustrating. That is the challenge of managing the small spools of wire for each camera, plugging the power to the unit, plugging in a camera at the end of the spool, the “express” setup seems to get the camera on the monitor and passing a hand in front of the camera indicated a RED letter M indicating motion.

It doesn’t take too long into this DIY install to figure out that it requires some forethought as to how to run the wiring and in some cases, a lot of work is required. After the cameras are placed in the areas that need covering, hiding the wires running back to the unit can be one of the hardest challenges for anyone without knowledge of building structures or building code requirements. No matter how affordable the install may have been, no one wants to see unsightly wires dangling for aesthetics or security reasons.

As any business or home user will note, they want to see their cameras or security system from a laptop or smartphone remotely. Without understanding how a network system works, one might find this task almost impossible. When dealing with internal IP and external IP addresses, it becomes clear that this is something that someone with IT knowledge will need to do. Going through the express settings configuration of the manual, downloading the application for the phone, and spending hours getting it to connect to the phone, is not something people enjoy much less have interest in doing. This is the process that typically fatigues the patience of most everyone and many would have easily taken the box of cameras back to the store had it not already been installed and all the pieces hung. They find that they’re committed, in over their head, and the time had been invested so they must proceed forward.

But let’s assume they were able to get it all to work and finally see the images on the phone – one camera at a time. They will find that the resolution on the phone is not as clear as was on the monitor, the motion recording tends to either store everything or nothing at all, and when they attempt to pull a sample recorded video, the image quality is drastically substandard. In fact, many cases one cannot even identify the face of someone they know.  Add to this the probability of storage problems as an improperly managed motion detection setting can quickly fill an entire drive which starts overwriting older video. This older video may not have been that old, and it may even show a theft, but because the hard drive is full, it overwrites precious information in order to keep recording. Without an alarm system to alert you to a breach, you would never know anything happened until you saw it was gone. By that time, the recording unit could have overwritten the event.

Our overall view of installing DIY security systems is that while it may seem like less work in the beginning, the benefit of professional experience can eliminate the risk of an improperly configured system as well as assure the quality of the image recording you are paying for. We strongly advocate for both an alarm system to alert you of an event as well as a video system to show you who it was.

We at Alaskan Network Security hold your security to the highest standard and work within your budget parameters to bring you a system we know you will be happy with and one that will secure you and your property.

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